In order for a dog to feel content, it must exercise everyday! Dogs can often become depressed because of a lack of everyday exercise. Weekly trips to the dog park, and daily long walks can be a good supplement. Larger dogs may even need a long walk or run on a treadmill every few days. Next time you see your dog walking lazily through the house, take him or her outside and throw a toy around. I bet your dog will perk up immediately. Here's a great website that will break down the consequences of lack of exercise, |Pets WebMD|.
As I talked about in the nutrition page, a healthy dog requires a healthy diet! Avoid table scraps, and use measuring cups when you feed them every day. Follow your vets recommendations as to the serving size, and do not exceed it. Your dog could gradually become overweight.
If a dog is left alone too often, he or she will lack proper socialization skills, and will act recklessly. A dog who isn't content will chew, tear and make messes in the house for attention. A dog needs constant love and reassurance. Try to make routines for them. They strive on schedules, and will quickly set their body clocks to them. Walk your dog regularly, it will teach proper leash etiquette, and if he or she is not walked regularly, bladder problems could develop later in life. Dogs should not have to hold their bladder for longer than three hours. A good solution to this is to hire a dog walker for the afternoons when you are at work. If you are in college, this is easy. Just run home after class for a quick walk and hello, then get back to studying if you need to.
The canines natural living habitat is within a pack. Dogs thrive in groups, and need to be socialized at a young age to understand how to behave in groups. This is why the dog park is such an amazing, free place. Dog parks will naturally socialize your dog, no puppy classes needed! If a dog is not socialized properly from a young age, they will be dangerous around other dogs because they will feel threatened, and lack basic social skills.
Personally, I am not naturally a good discipliner. That's why I enjoy Cesar Milan's website so much. Cesar provides great resources on how to provide great nutrition for your dog, but also on how to discipline them. Check out his blog on |discipline|.There are articles about topics such as crate training, begging and even how to teach the "leave it" command.